7.16.2016

My Travels: Two days in Recoaro Terme


High mountain is a world apart: life at its full but also at its essential terms. Apparently deserted but inhabited by thousands of living beings: discreet, dissimulated, strong.
Insects whose life is so short they seem immortal, scarcely connotated as individuals. Bold plants blooming in the thin crack of a rock, rooting in few inches of dirt left there by the wind. Invisible animals spying from far, occasionally crossing the path in a furious still controlled run. Birds floating above.

As you know I had been in Recoaro in December for a trekking and since that I have kept on touch with the guide, Sebastiano: one of the best persons I have ever met.  ast week we arrangend a new excursion.
My son and I left Florence by train just after his race on Sunday - the 10th of July. It's a long travel: there is a fast train from Florence to Padova, a regional train from Padova to Vicenza and then a very slow urban bus from Vicenza to Recoaro Terme, the last station at the bottom of Valdagno. It's interesting to note that this bus runs on the route of the old railway, dismissed in the 80ies. It's a pity because it was fastest, more confortable and less polluting.
Starting at 3.30 pm we arrived at 8 pm and went straight to our hotel - Hote Trettenero - where a magnificent dinner was waiting for us in the sumptuous dinner room. The hotel itself is very beautiful, in a historical building. The owners are two sisters, Brigida and Marta: very friendly, tireless and effective. 

In spite we were tired we went for a walk in the fresh air of the night. In summer the town is lively and keeps the sober elegance of its golden age, in the middle of the IX century. There is a thermal center and a famous factory of mineral water, now in trouble after the multinational Nestlè acquired it. Workers are fighting to save their jobs and moreover the identity of this town, and I support their fight.
On Monday morning we met Sebastiano and he brought us by car to Campo Grosso where there is a beautiful refuge and many tracks start.
We walked a 20' on a lovely path in the forest, gradually climbing, and reached the foot of a rocky way 
toward Monte Fumante. Atop we ate our lunch - a sandwitch with the typical 'sopressa' of Recoaro - and enjoyed a good chat. 



The way back was challenging for me! a large l
andslide of small rocks. And there we saw some herds of chamois: elegantly running on the high precipitous slopes of the mountain, unconcerned.
We ended the day in the refuge with a good beer.
It was about 5 pm when we arrived to the hotel: time for a relaxing bath in the hydro-massage pool on the roof terrace before another tasty dinner.
On Tuesday we took it easy. The weather had worsened and there were some rain showers but in the valley it was still very hot so we spent the morning visiting the town: the thermes and the beautiful park by the river full of hydrangeas (hortensia) from where a cableway starts to Recoaro Mille ski resort.
CC BY-SA 2.0 it, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=574420
We had lunch in a cheap restaurant (must be tried: 'bigoli all'anatra') and started our long travel back. We stopped in Vicenza to drink something COLD as the heat was awful and wandering in the beautiful center we found a lovely place - with air-conditioner! - La Bottega del Caffè : smoothies, fruits icecream, icy coffee and coffee cream... A - relatively - fresh heaven.
Reluctantly we left it to have a look to the several monuments built by the famous architect Andrea Palladio, then we took the train to Padova and from there we went back to Florence.
I feel that has been not my last time on the Piccole Dolomiti!

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